This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol2", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Herbs, mostly with flat basal leaves, and numerous very small flowers cymose-paniculate on the branches of bracted scapes, in 1-3-flowered bracteolate clusters. forming one-sided spikes. Calyx campanulate or tubular, the limb scarious, 5-toothed, the tube usually 10-ribbed. Petals 5, clawed. Stamens adnate to the bases of the petals. Styles mostly 5, separate in our species, stigmatic along the inner side. Fruit a utricle. [Ancient name of the wild beet.]
About 120 species. Besides the following, 5 others occur in the southern and western parts of the United States. Type species: Statice Limonium L.
Statice caroliniana Walt. Fl. Car. 118. 1788.
S. Limonium var. carolinianum A. Gray, Man. Ed. 2, 270. 1856.
Glabrous, fleshy, root thick, fusiform or branched, astringent; scape terete, striate, slender, paniculately branched above, 6'-2° high. Leaves oblanceolate, obtuse or acutish and subulate-tipped at the apex, narrowed into margined petioles, entire, or slightly undulate, 3'-10' long, 1/2'-1 1/2' wide, shorter than the scapes, the midvein prominent, the lateral veins very obscure; flowers erect, solitary or 2 or 3 together in the sessile secund bracteolate clusters, about 2" high; calyx 5-toothed, sometimes with as many minute intermediate teeth in the sinuses; corolla pale purple; petals spatulate; ovary oblong or ovoid; styles filiform.
Tufted acaulescent fleshy herbs, with slender mostly naked scapes, basal persistent rosu-late narrow leaves with no differentiation into blade and petiole, and rather small short-pedicelled or sessile flowers, in dense terminal glomerate heads, subtended by scarious bracts and bractlets, the lower bracts forming a kind of involucre to the head, the two lowest reflexed and more or less united into a sheath. Calyx funnelform, 10-ribbed, 5-toothed, oblique at the base or decurrent on the pedicel, scarious. Petals 5, distinct, or more or less coherent. Filaments adnate to the bases of the petals. Styles united at the base, pubescent below the middle, longitudinally stigmatic above. Utricle 5-pointed at the summit, rarely dehiscent. [Greek, standing.]
About 20 species, natives of Europe, north Africa, western Asia, northern North America and southern South America. The following typical species is the only one known in North America.
Static Armeria L. Sp. Pl. 274. 1753.
Armeria vulgaris Willd. Enum. 333. 1809.
Scape glabrous or somewhat pubescent, 4'-18' high. Leaves narrowly linear, acute or obtuse, flatfish, obscurely I-nerved, entire, numerous in a basal tuft, 1'-3' long, 1/2"-1 1/2" wide; bracts scarious and obtuse, the 2 lower ones forming a sheath 3"-10" long; head of flowers 1/2'-1' in diameter; calyx-base decurrent on the very short pedicel, pubescent at least on the stronger nerves; corolla pink, purple or white, 2"-3" broad; petals obtuse or cuspidate.
Along the sea-coast and on mountains, Quebec and Labrador to Alaska, south on the Pacific Coast to California. Also in Europe, northern Asia, and apparently the same species at the Strait of Magellan. Summer. Sea- or European-thrift. Sea-gilliflower. Sea-grass. Red-root.